On February 1 and 2, 2024, in Brussels, Belgium, Minister of Foreign Affairs Krišjānis Kariņš participated in the 3rd European Union (EU)-India and Pacific Region Forum and the 24th EU-Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) meeting. The ministerial meeting was chaired by the High Representative of the EU in the field of foreign policy and security, Giuseppe Borel, and the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Philippines, Enrique Manalo, the country coordinating ASEAN-EU cooperation.
Addressing the participants of the EU ̶India-Pacific Region Forum, K. Kariņš emphasized that the current global challenges ̶ climate change, maritime security, energy and food security, hybrid threats ̶ equally affect both Europe and the Indo-Pacific region. Strengthening the rules-based international order plays an essential role in overcoming them. The Minister of Foreign Affairs emphasized Latvia’s interest in cooperating with partners in the region in order to strengthen economic security and resilience against hybrid threats.
On the other hand, during the EU-ASEAN meeting, the ministers discussed plans for future cooperation based on the observance of international law, thus promoting peace, stability and prosperity both in Europe and Southeast Asia. Those present affirmed their support for the sovereignty, political independence and territorial integrity of Ukraine. The ministers also emphasized the importance of peace, security and freedom of navigation in the South China Sea, respecting international law.
Addressing the participants of the meeting, K. Kariņš emphasized the importance of economic cooperation, which is in the interests of both the EU and ASEAN.
“We are interested in diversifying trade and investment flows in order not to put the supply chain and economic security at risk,” emphasized K. Kariņš.
At the end of the meeting, the EU-ASEAN joint statement was approved.
The EU-ASEAN dialogue has been ongoing for more than 45 years. In 2020, EU-ASEAN relations were raised to the level of a strategic partnership.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs